There is a theory that people living in the country are burgled less than those in the city. While this is sometimes the case, it is not as clear cut as that. Let’s look at Victoria’s western region to unveil the truth.
Victoria’s western region is home to one of the top 10 most burgled postcodes –Anglesea. The region, which starts with Wyndham City, Melton Shire and Macedon Ranges Shire, is home to four other postcodes in the top 40. These postcodes cover Geelong, Geelong South, Delacombe, Sebastopol, Bareena, Chilwell, Melton, Kurunjag, Toolern Vale, Brookefield, Exford and Melton South.
While most areas in suburban Melbourne have seen a decrease in the burglary rate since 1997, Melton has stayed about the same. One in 37 homes were burgled in 1997, compared with one in 44 last year. Melton’s best year was 2006, when the rate dropped to one in 49 homes. Geelong, however, has been improving, with the rate dropping from one in 32 to one in 56.
On the other hand, the western region is also home to some of Victoria’s safest postcodes, and postcodes which have seen significant improvements, such as Colac, which saw a drop from one in 33 homes in 1997 to one in 133 last year. Ballarat also saw improvement from one in 39 homes to one in 53. However, this is still above the state average of one in 71 homes.
Leading Senior Constable Andrew King, the community liaison officer for the Geelong and surf coast area, said burglaries come in waves.
“Criminals often work in patches; when you look at the intelligence, you find they’re targeting specific areas, and that could be driven be a whole heap of things,” he said.
Andrew said it was important to call 000 if something doesn’t seem right.
“We find often when we take a report is that neighbours will have seen something, someone hanging around or whatever it might be, but they’re unsure and think they might be bothering police.”
Andrew said securing your house should be top priority, “we still have a mentality down here of not locking doors and windows”. He said he had received reports where the burglar gained access through an unlocked door or window.